It’s not every day I nip out to the local shrine for a little photo taking and run into gaggle of women dressed as eight foot tall birds. Japan can be weird, but it’s not usually this weird! They were performing a thousand-year-old dance called Shirasagi no Mai, which means (unsurprisingly), White Heron Dance. It was originally performed as an antidote to that internationally pesky medieval disease, the plague, but because it was apparently not the magic bullet people had hoped, it fell into disuse until 1968, when shrine officials resurrected it from images in an old scroll.
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Jonelle Patrick writes novels set in Japan, produces the monthly e-magazine Japanagram, and blogs at Only In Japan and The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had
6 thoughts on “Giant Faux White Herons”
Sweet! You made it there. Did you see the Jidai parade as well?
I had to leave before it started (><) although I badly badly wanted to see the ladder guys. And DUH apologies for my belated linking to your blog post about this – still jetlagged out of my mind and getting on trains going the wrong direction, aieeee! After being at this event, I have a renewed appreciation for how gorgeous your photos are, because it is HARD to take decently-framed pictures in the midst of massive, random crowds of spectators!
Thank you! Well, I am working on my 10 000 hours… slowly getting there! (^-^)
Plague aside, those are really well-constructed wings. 😀
They really were beautifully made, and they unfolded like a dream. Can you tell I am suffering from wing-lust?
And they are made of paper…! (^-^) So get out your scissors friends…!